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Friday, February 12, 2021

Alexander Solzhenitsyn's comments 40 years back

 While clearing out old papers from my files, I came across excerpts of remarks made by Nobel Laureate Alexander Solzhenitsyn at his address to the Harvard University Graduating Class of 1978. These were published on page 8 A of The Philadelphia Inquirer, on Wednesday, June 14, 1978. Here are a few of them:

“A decline in courage may be the most striking feature which an outside observer notices in the West in our days”.

“I have spent all my life under a communist regime, and I will tell you that a society without any objective legal scale is a terrible one indeed. But a society with no other scale but the legal one is not quite worthy of man either”.

“We have placed too much hope in political and social reforms, only to find out that we are being deprived of our most precious possession: our spiritual life”.

“Hastiness and superficiality are the psychic disease of the 20th century and  more than anywhere else this disease is reflected in the press”.

What will he say now about 24 – hour news cycles, spreading of dangerous misinformation in the social media and our response to the pandemic?

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